Residential Choices for an Aging Parent

Watching your parents get older is never easy. There are 47 million senior citizens in America according to 2017 estimates by the U.S. Census Bureau. That number is expected to double by 2060. Considering that chronic health issues tend to emerge during the golden years, there is a strong chance your parent will need some sort of assistance as they age. Determining residential care for a parent never is easy; at East West Care, we recommend having a plan in place well before the need for elder care arises. With that in mind, here’s a more detailed look at the residential choices that are available for an aging parent.

Aging in place refers to situations where an older adult decides to remain in their own home or live with a family member or close friend. This situation is ideal for seniors who still are relatively independent. For those seniors who opt to age in place and need a higher level of assistance, there are services available such as in-home caregivers, housekeepers, or people who can cook or deliver meals. Accessibility options such as wheelchair ramps and bathtub railings also can be involved.

Independent living refers to housing that is designed exclusively for senior citizens. This housing may be in the form of a retirement community, senior housing, or senior apartments. Whatever form it takes, one goal of this situation is to create an active community setting for aging individuals, where daily chores such as maintenance, cooking, and housekeeping are provided for by paid staff and there are opportunities for socialization.

Residential care homes are small facilities that are intended for those seniors who need a higher level of individual care. Lodging and meals are provided, as is assistance with daily activities such as hygiene and dressing. Living in a situation of this type usually costs about half as much as a nursing home. Typically, a residential care setting provides services to just a few individuals at one time, usually with a maximum capacity of fewer than 10 people.

CCRCs, or Continuing Care Retirement Communities, combine different aspects of independent living, assisted living, and a nursing home. These facilities are ideal for seniors who want to live out the rest of their life in the same place, and where future care can be changed or increased as their needs become more intensive. Residents simply move to a different area of the same community if their level of care increases. This convenience comes with a price, as a CCRC is the most expensive type of long-term care that is available.

Assisted Living refers to a wide range of different facilities, but the common trait is that these facilities are intended for senior citizens who are capable of living on their own but also need some level of assistance. An assisted living facility has staff on duty around the clock and provides services such as meals, medication management, housekeeping, transportation, and assistance with bathing and dressing if needed. Many assisted living centers have common areas for social and recreational activities, as well as a group dining room.

Nursing Homes represent the most intensive level of care and are intended for senior citizens who require 24-hour supervised care. In most cases, nursing home residents are suffering from severe or debilitating physical or mental illnesses that make it impossible for them to care for themselves. Care is overseen by a licensed physician, and some sort of medical professional or nurse always is on the premises. Certain nursing home facilities also keep a physical or occupational therapist on staff.

Residential care in Redwood City

Deciding which type of residence is right for your parent is a very personal decision. You have to evaluate the needs of your parent, as well as the financial budget available and the level of care that may be required. Your parent also can and should have input on this decision-making process, so that they will be comfortable in their new home. East West Care prides itself on providing compassionate and comprehensive care for seniors in a comfortable residential care environment. We provide room, board, housekeeping, and personal care assistance while also managing and distributing needed medications.

To learn more about East West Care, call us at 650-421-6715 to schedule a tour of our facility in Redwood City, conveniently located in the Bay Area.

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